Xavier Veilhan, one of the leading French artists, made a brilliant film Vent Moderne [Modern Wind], glorifying architecture, geometry, man and nature.
What I like about video and art films – is that they give you a large field to train your imagination and your ability to interpret chains of images. This is what you could fully expect from VENT MODERNE. Villa Noailles situated in the South of France is a perfect decoration for the film. This villa was built almost 100 years ago and from my perspective is still more modern than even. Villa was hosting many avant-garde artists in the first half of 20th century and it still keeps their spirits and inspires artists. Many Ray had realized a surrealistic film taking place in Villa Noailles and funny enough Xavier Veilan dialogues with Man Ray through VENT MODERNE by using same shapes (cars, black spheres, men and women doing their exercising).
Vent Moderne is of course full of references, at least some of them I noticed or imagined. From geometry, stairs in form of golden ratio reminds divine proportions. From ancient culture, man pushing black sphere recalls the dung beetle of Egyptian mythology, symbol of rebirth and regeneration. From literature, I found the atmosphere of Fitzgerald’s “Tender is the night” and of Sagan’s “Hello Sadness”. Xavier Veilhan tells us a story, keeping the pace with music and obliging the viewer to keep the breath.
Vent Moderne is a great art film with coded drama, using clean and elegant layouts. Not to exclude that I had over-imagined things, but at least I had fun. If I were to have an art gallery one day, this is exactly the type of art I would show to the public. I hope that it will be seen in other places soon.
Read also about the best museum exhibition to see in Paris this winter